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Arizona governor’s approval rating falls amid coronavirus outbreak

Gov. Doug Ducey answers questions at the online town hall meeting Thursday, April 30.

(The Center Square) – Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey’s approval rating has fallen 24 points since the beginning of June, primarily because of dissatisfaction with how he has handled the coronavirus pandemic, according to a new poll released Monday.

According to the July Arizona Public Opinion Pulse, conducted by OH Predictive Insights, nearly two-thirds of Arizona voters – 63 percent – say they are “moderately” or “extremely” concerned about Ducey’s performance. The same survey in early June found Ducey had a 59-37 approval rating. In the latest poll, just 35 percent approve.

Arizona now has 122,467 confirmed cases and 2,237 fatalities. That includes 2,537 new cases and 86 additional deaths reported Sunday. That is the sixth day this month at least 40 new fatalities were reported.

Of the tests processed last week, 19 percent came back positive, far higher than May when it was 5 percent, but down two percentage points from the previous two weeks. Health officials said that of the 6,791 hospital beds occupied statewide over the weekend, 3,432 – 49 percent – were coronavirus patients. That included a high of 922 coronavirus patients in intensive care.

“As goes the coronavirus, so goes Doug Ducey’s fortunes among Arizona voters,” OH Predictive Insights Chief of Research Mike Noble said in a news release. “When the outbreak was being contained, Ducey was popular. Now that cases are on the rise, his disapproval rating is, too.”

Ducey, a Republican, won a second term as governor in 2018 and also served as state treasurer from 2011 to 2015.

The OHPI poll also found that 52 percent of Arizona voters said they are “extremely” concerned about the spread of coronavirus. That tops the previous high of 45 percent in April’s poll and the first time the response has been above 50 percent since the organization began asking the question in March.

The poll found that 90 percent of Democrats and two-thirds of Independents are highly concerned about the pandemic, less than half of Republicans are. Some 35 percent of GOP voters said they are only “slightly” concerned or “not concerned at all,” compared to 22 percent of Independents and 7 percent of Democrats.

Pollsters also found that the number of voters who are willing to venture out of their homes has more than doubled since April, going from 16 percent to 35 percent.

The poll was conducted July 6-7 among 600 likely voters and has a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percent.

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